Ex-SJSU official pleads guilty, inappropriately touched woman athletes


San Jose State’s former director of sports medicine pleaded guilty Tuesday to two misdemeanor counts after he was accused of inappropriately touching woman athletes as part of supposed medical treatment.

Scott Shaw, 56, had been accused of touching the breasts and buttocks of four students who played on San Jose State teams “without their consent and without a legitimate purpose” between 2017 and 2020.

Shaw faces up to two years in prison along with supervised release, restitution to the women and a fine. He is set to be sentenced Nov. 14, when the women can make impact statements against Shaw.

The guilty plea came 12 days after the initial federal case against Shaw — in which he faced six counts — ended in a mistrial after the jury could not reach a verdict.

More than a dozen woman swimmers had previously accused Shaw of inappropriately touching them during physical therapy from 2006 to 2009. He denied misconduct, and the university investigated the allegations and cleared him of wrongdoing. No criminal charges were filed.

San Jose State launched a second investigation in 2019 after swimming coach Sage Hopkins alerted school officials of more alleged misconduct.

Shaw resigned in 2020 after serving as the sports medicine director since 2008. Fallout from the allegations prompted university president Mary Papazian and athletic director Marie Tuite to resign in 2021. Federal prosecutors found that the university had failed to adequately respond to reports of sexual misconduct against Shaw even though complaints had been reported for years.

Caitlin Macky, a former Spartans swimmer who was one of the first to make a complaint against Shaw, expressed frustration with Tuesday’s outcome.

“It’s a little bit maddening to go through a whole trial, and 12 years of this person vehemently denying everything, then all of a sudden he shows up and admits to that,” Macky told The San Jose Mercury News.

San Jose State agreed to pay $1.6 million to 13 athletes as part of a settlement announced in September 2021 between the university, the U.S. Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of California.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.


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